IoT trends for 2017

According to Intel IoT is expected to be a multi-trillion-dollar market, with 50 billion devices creating 44 zettabytes (or 44 trillion gigabytes) of data annually by 2020. But that widely cited 50 billion IoT devices in 2020 number is clearly not correct! Forecast of 50 Billion Devices by 2020 Is Outdated. In 2017 we should be talking about about some sensible numbers. The current count is somewhere between Gartner’s estimate of 6.4 billion (which doesn’t include smartphones, tablets, and computers), International Data Corporation’s estimate of 9 billion (which also excludes those devices), and IHS’s estimate of 17.6 billion (with all such devices included). Both Ericsson and Evans have lowered their expectations from 50 billion for 2020: Evans, who is now CTO of Stringify, says he expects to see 30 billion connected devices by then, while Ericsson figures on 28 billion by 2021.

Connectivity and security will be key features for Internet of Things processors  in 2017. Microcontroller (MCU) makers will continue to target their products at the Internet of Things (IoT) in 2017 by giving more focus on battery life, more connectivity of various types, and greater security. The new architectures are almost sure to spawn a multitude of IoT MCUs in 2017 from manufacturers who adopt ARM’s core designs.

ARM will be big. Last year, ARM’s partners shipped 15 billion chips based on its architectures. The trend toward IoT processors will go well beyond ARM licensees. Intel rolled out the Intel Atom E3900 Series  for IoT applications. And do not forget MIPS an RISC-V.

FPGA manufacturers are pushing their products to IoT market. They promise that FPGAs solve challenges at the core of IoT implementation: making IoT devices power efficient, handling incompatible interfaces, and providing a processing growth path to handle the inevitable increase in device performance requirement.

Energy harvesting field will become interesting in 2017 as it is more broadly adopted. Energy harvesting is becoming the way forward to help supplement battery power or lose the need for it altogether. Generally researchers are eyeing energy-harvesting to power ultra-low-power devices, wearable technology, and other things that don’t need a lot of power or don’t come in a battery-friendly form factor.


Low power wide area networks (LPWA) networks (also known as NarrowBand IoT) will be hot in 2017. There is hope that f LPWA nets will act as a catalyst, changing the nature of the embedded and machine-to-machine markets as NB-IoT focuses specifically on indoor coverage, low cost, long battery life, and enabling a large number of connected devices. The markets will become a kind of do-it-yourselfers paradise of modules and services, blurring the lines between vendors, users and partners.  At the same time for years to come, the market for low power wide area networks (LPWA) will be as fragmented and  is already in a race to the bottom (Sigfox, said to be promising costs approaching $1 per node per year). Competing technologies include Sigfox, LoRa Alliance, LTE Cat 1, LTE Cat M1 (eMTC), LTE Cat NB1 (NB-IoT) and other sub-gigahertz options almost too numerous to enumerate.

We are starting to see a battle between different IoT technologies, and in few years to come we will see which are winners and which technologies will be lost in the fight. Sigfox and Lora are currently starting well, but telecom operators with mobile networks NB-IoT will try hit the race heavily in 2017. Vendors prep Cat M1, NB1 for 2017: The Cat M1 standard delivers up to 380 Kbits/second over a 1.4 MHz channel. NB-1 handles up to 40 Kbits/s over 200 kHz channels.  Vendors hope the 7-billion-unit installed base of cellular M2M modules expands. It’s too early to tell which technologies will be mainstream and which niche. It could be that cellular NB-IOT was too late, it will fail in the short term, it can win in the long term, and the industry will struggle to make any money from it. At $2 a year, 20 billion devices will contribute around 4% of current global mobile subscription revenues.

New versions of communication standards will be taken into use in 2017. For example Bluetooth 5 that adds more speed and IoT functionality. In 2017, we will see an increase in the number of devices with the new Bluetooth 5 standard.

Industrial IoT to gain traction in 2017. Industrial applications ultimately have the greater transformative potential than consumer products, offering users real returns on investment (ROI) rather than just enhanced convenience or “cool factor”. But the industrial sector is conservative and has been slow to embrace an industrial IoT (IIoT), but is seems that they are getting interested now. During the past year there has been considerable progress in removing many of the barriers to IIoT adoption. A global wide implementation of an IIoT is many years away, of course. The issues of standards and interoperability will most likely remain unresolved for several years to come, but progress is being made. The Industrial Internet Consortium released a framework to support development of standards and best practices for IIoT security.

The IIoT  market is certainly poised to grow. A Genpact research study, for instance, indicates that more than 80% of large companies believe that the IIoT will be essential to their future success. In a recent market analysis by Industry ARC, for instance, the projected value of the IIoT market will reach more than $120 billion by 2021. Research firm Markets and Markets is even more optimistic, pegging IIoT growth at a CAGR of 8% to more than $150 billion by 2020. And the benefits will follow. By GE’s estimate, the IIoT will stimulate an increase in the global GDP of $10 to $15 trillion over the next 20 years.

Systems integrators are seeking a quick way to enter the industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) market. So expect to see many plug and play IoT sensor systems unveiled. There were many releses in 2016, and expect to see more in 2017. Expect to see device, connectivity and cloud service to be marketed as one packet.

IoT analytics will be talked a lot in 2017. Many companies will promise to turn Big Data insights into bigger solutions. For industrial customers Big Data analytics is promised to drive operational efficiencies, cut costs, boosting production, and improving worker productivity. There are many IIoT analytic solution and platform suppliers already on the market and a growing number of companies are now addressing industrial analytics use.

In 2016 it was all bout getting the IoT devices connected to cloud. In 2017 we will see increased talk about fog computing.  Fog computing is new IoT trend pushed by Cisco and many other companies. As the Internet of Things (IoT) evolves, decentralized, distributed-intelligence concepts such as “fog computing” are taking hold to address the need for lower latencies, improved security, lower power consumption, and higher reliability. The basic premise of fog computing is classic decentralization whereby some processing and storage functions are better performed locally instead of sending data all the way from the sensor, to the cloud, and back again to an actuator. This demands smarter sensors and new wireless sensor network architectures. Groups such as the Open Fog Consortium have formed to define how it should best be done. You might start to want to be able to run the same code in cloud and your IoT device.


The situation in IoT security in 2016 was already Hacking the IoT: As Bad As I Feared It’d Be and there is nothing that would indicate that the situation will not get any better in 2017.  A veritable army of Internet-connected equipment has been circumvented of late, due to vulnerabilities in its hardware, software or both … “smart” TVs, set-top boxes and PVRs, along with IP cameras, routers, DSL, fiber and cable modems, printers and standalone print servers, NASs, cellular hot spots, and probably plenty of other gear. IoT world at the moment is full of vulnerable devices, and it will take years to get then replaces with more secure devices. Those vulnerable devices can be used to make huge DDoS attacks against Internet services.  The 2016 October 21 cyberattacks on Dyn brought to light how easily many IoT devices can be compromised. I expect that kind of incidents will happen more in 2017 as DDoS botnets are pretty easy to build with tools available on-line. There’s no question that everyone in the chain – manufacturers, retailers and consumers – have to do a better job securing connected devices.When it comes to IoT, more security is needed.



  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Rani Molla / Recode:
    Survey: about 60% of Prime customers say they definitely don’t want Amazon Key, which lets the courier inside the house, while 5% say they definitely do want it

    Most Amazon Prime subscribers say they don’t want to buy the Amazon Key that lets delivery people into their homes
    But 5 percent of Prime subscribers would definitely buy an Amazon Key.

    Next week, Amazon will start delivering packages straight into Americans’ homes, using a smart lock and camera device called Amazon Key.

    But will anyone bother paying for what seems like an invasive service?

    Most wouldn’t. About 58 percent of people who have Amazon Prime definitely would not buy Amazon Key, according to a SurveyMonkey poll done on behalf of Recode.

    That’s only slightly less than the 61 percent of all U.S. adults who wouldn’t buy the product, suggesting it’s broadly unattractive, regardless of whether people are Amazon customers.

    Among Prime subscribers, only 5 percent said they would definitely buy Amazon Key. Of all U.S. shoppers, even less — 4 percent — said they would.

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Chetan Sharma:
    US mobile trends in Q3: 62% of carrier net-adds from IoT and cars, smartphone penetration at 92%, phone upgrade cycle at 3 years, data use to pass 6GB/mo in ’17

    US Mobile Market Update – Q3 2017

    Despite the negative revenue growth, net-income improved 8% as operators tightened their belts and lowered their expenditures with Sprint seeing the sharpest increase.

    Verizon continued its steady march on the IoT/Telematics front. While the growth has slowed down, it is marching towards a $1B business in 2018.

    Income/sub/mo declined after two straight quarters of recovery with Sprint experiencing the sharpest declines. On average, AT&T and Verizon took the bulk of the profits.

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Silicon Labs Bends Micrium RTOS to IoT

    It’s hard to argue with anyone who insists that the Internet of Things (IoT) still has a long way to go, if only because no application-level standards exist to ease interoperability among various IoT devices. An issue possibly even more serious is sloppy IoT security, thrown in as an afterthought more often than not.

    But the IoT industry isn’t standing still. Chip vendors are making progress in connectivity, an integral part of the IoT story. Since neither homes nor commercial buildings are built on a single wireless network, IoT chips with built-in multi-protocol support are fast becoming mainstream.

    By launching Monday (Nov. 6) what the company describes as “dynamic multi-protocol software” for its Wireless Gecko SoC and module portfolio, Silicon Labs hopes to stand out among a growing list of IoT chip vendors with multi-protocol capability already designed into their hardware. Silicon Labs claims its new software is unique, because it enables “IoT devices to dynamically connect to Zigbee and Bluetooth Low Energy ecosystems at the same time,” as put it by Daniel Cooley, senior vice president and general manager of IoT products at Silicon Labs.

    Dynamic multi-protocol
    Lee Ratliff, senior principal analyst for connectivity and IoT, technology, media & telecom at IHS Markit, said, “Off the top of my head, I know that Nordic, TI, NXP, Qorvo, and ON Semiconductor have multi-protocol capability in hardware.”

    However, dynamic switching is not prevalent in their solutions. Ratliff told us, “All multi-protocol products and demos I’ve seen have been either programmed (one time switch after device provisioning on the network) or switched (multiple switches between protocols during normal operation, but not real-time dynamic).”

    A variety of IoT use-case scenarios serve to explain the need for dynamic multi-protocol operations. Dynamic time slicing between networks becomes critical, for example, when a primary Thread network must periodically transmit Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon. This also applies when a primary Zigbee network must switch to BLE if an eligible device is present, or when IoT devices have to listen on one network and transmit on another for network translation.

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Bluetooth Mesh Drives Security

    Bluetooth-enabled devices have been a target of many documented hacks including Blueprinting, Bluesnarfing, Bluebugging, Bluejacking, Bluesmack and now most recently BlueBorne. BlueBorne intercepts communications in seconds, and subsequently enables hackers to download malicious software without requiring a file download – a frightening thought for consumers using and interacting with smart phones, tablets, wearables, beacons and personal assistants. These Bluetooth-enabled devices transmit and receive private user information that consumers expect to be secure. This article discusses how the introduction of Bluetooth mesh will remedy current vulnerabilities and drive a more secure and private IoT world.

    In July of 2017, the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) introduced Bluetooth mesh networking, continuing its upgrades to Bluetooth 4.2 with low energy technology and Bluetooth 5 specifications. Bluetooth 4.2 added optional security features while Bluetooth 5 added longer distances, better reliability, more data throughput, and faster data rates. Bluetooth mesh allows Bluetooth devices to create a network targeting applications like smart cities and factories.

    As the chart shows, costs are one of the biggest disappointments from 2014 to 2016. Bluetooth’s high level of use contributes to cost reductions, and die size has improved over the past 18 months. Bluetooth’s low memory footprint and small die size make it a perfect technology for chip integration. Battery life is a constant priority and even though other standards like the 802.15.4 technologies use less power than Bluetooth, the difference is minimal and remedied by integration into a single SoC rather than separate chipset implementations.

    However, wireless sensor networks have their own set of security vulnerabilities. Hackers exploit these with node capture attacks, side channel attacks, denial of service attacks, routing attacks, replication attacks, time synchronization attacks, Sybil attacks and more. Upgrades to the Bluetooth Low Energy specifications address these concerns by, for example, making security a requirement in the Bluetooth mesh specification.

    Bluetooth is Pervasive, But is it Secure?

    It’s still common practice for many Bluetooth Low Energy devices to send unencrypted data in peer-to-peer connections. Logically, this unsecured connection is because security is optional in current Bluetooth Low Energy Generic Attributes (GATT) devices. Secondly, developers see extra risk and cost associated with implementing security. If there are limited repercussions to avoiding security, and big hurdles to implementing security, many choose to forgo any security features.

    Bluetooth Mesh Security Requirements and Implementation

    For example, per a security researcher at the DEF CON hacker conference in 2016, “Many Bluetooth Low Energy smart locks can be hacked and opened by unauthorized users, but their manufacturers seem to want to do nothing about it.” Today, Bluetooth mesh requires lock manufacturers to implement proper security features in their devices.

    Bluetooth mesh security uses three types of security keys: Network Keys, AppKeys and Device Keys.

    From a bottoms-up security implementation, many Bluetooth-enabled products will need to begin with a Random Number Generator.

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Securing High-Value Targets with a Secure IP Subsystem

    Understanding security threats and building solutions to protect against them is a relatively new concept for embedded developers. As an example, many early IoT devices were focused purely on cost. Designers spent very little time architecting robust security solutions. This may not be critical for a smart light bulb, but increasingly IoT devices are covering more of users’ daily routines, processing sensitive data such as personal medical information or financial transactions. These types of “high-value” applications become lucrative targets for hackers and thieves. There are similar targets in mobile, automotive and industrial markets.

    This article shows how leveraging an integrated, pre-verified subsystem that is optimized to protect against a variety of attacks on high-value targets can accelerate the development of cost-optimized, embedded trusted execution environments (TEEs) that reduce complexity and speed time-to-market.

    Understanding Hardware Roots of Trust

    A hardware Root of Trust can be defined by the four basic building blocks:

    1. The protective hardware provides a trusted execution environment (TEE) for the privilege software to run.
    2. At a minimum, it must perform one or more proven cryptographic functions like AES based.
    3. A form of tamper protection must be present and available for the entire runtime.
    4. A flexible, yet simple user interface that the host can interact with, through either the host CPU and/or a host controller toggling GPIOs.

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Call to Arms on Cybersecurity for Industrial Control

    Since last spring, U.S. Department of Homeland Security warnings to manufacturers and infrastructure owners about industrial control systems’ vulnerabilities to cyberattack have grown increasingly dire. In October, those warnings were recast as stark realities when DHS and the FBI issued a joint technical alert confirming ICS cyberattacks against manufacturers as well as energy, nuclear, and water utilities. The breaches are part of a long-term campaign targeting small and low-security networks as vectors for gaining access to larger, high-value networks in the energy sector.

    The 2017 annual SANS Institute survey of ICS security practitioners found that nearly 69 percent describe the threats to their ICS as either high or severe/critical, but only 46 percent apply vendor-validated patches regularly, and 40 percent aren’t even sure whether their control systems were compromised during the previous year. On the plus side, awareness of, and budgets for, ICS security is increasing, the survey found. Yet external threats such as hacking are perceived as only slightly more dangerous than adding unprotected devices and “things” to the network.

    As more devices get connected to Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) networks, increasingly sophisticated cyberthreats originally directed at IT environments are entering operational technology (OT) environments, including ICS, said Abhi Dugar, IDC’s research director for IoT security. Those threats pose very different and potentially larger, more hazardous risks as they migrate to OT environments, where potential targets include critical infrastructure such as power grids and dams.

  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Design Next-Generation Applications with Multiprotocol
    Wireless Software
    Reduce wireless subsystem BOM and size by up to 40%

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    DIY Philips Hue LED Strip Lighting
    A non-RGB and less expensive alternative to Hue LED strip lighting.

    A non-RGB and less expensive alternative to Hue LED strip lighting.

    - Integrate with Philips Hue System
    - Maintain HomeKit Integration
    - Be less expensive

    Instead of building something from scratch I choose to use the control board from a Philips Hue White bulb to drive a standard 12V led strip. The price of the bulb is comparable to an ESP8266 or other wireless capable micro controller.

    Current State: Working with minor issue.

  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    STM32L4 Sensor Tile
    Small, connected device for smelling and hearing in any environment.

    This is a 20 mm x 20 mm four-layer pcb tile full of interesting sensors (ICS43434 I2S Digital Microphone, MPU6500 acclerometer/gyro, BME280 pressure/temperature/humidity, and CCS811 air quality) with a Rigado BMD-350 UART BLE bridge for sending data to a smart phone all managed by a STM32L432 host MCU.

    The STM32L432 is programmed using the Arduino IDE via the USB connector and serial data can be displayed on the serial monitor to verify performance and proper function, etc.

  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    WiFi shield for Arduino using an ESP8266 module

    I’m making a WiFi shield based on the ESP8266 module and also a library and some example projects.


    The Cellstick is an Open-Source Cellular board that combines an Arduino with a Cellular module for internet of things (IoT) projects.

  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A new breed of designers are creating IoT edge devices that span across analog, digital, RF, and MEMS domains. They are tackling a challenge that once seemed impossible: combining the electronics of the device using the traditional CMOS IC flow with the MEMS sensor on the same silicon die.

  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How Blockchain is the Key to a Secure IoT
    Blockchain’s first big application outside of finance should be in solving IoT’s security woes.

    Smeets and his team at Ericsson Research have proposed a new way of looking at digital Ids they call “ID Brokering.” “[With ID Brokering] identity is not the credential itself. It is the description of the link between the identifier and its credential,” Smeets said.

  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Azure IoT Suite Focuses on Next Generation Industrial Applications

    Microsoft strengthens its cloud offerings with new solutions for preconfigured remote monitoring, a new device provisioning service and technical guidelines on developing highly secure devices.

    The next generation of the Microsoft Azure IoT Suite’s preconfigured remote monitoring solution introduces a new scalable Microservices architecture that dramatically simplifies the ability for customers to customize the solution. The company says that input from major companies including The Hershey Company, Schneider Electric, Rolls Royce and Sandvik played a key role. The new solution also utilizes a redesigned user interface that makes it easier for customers to visualize the system, along with support for both Java and .NET programming languages.

    According to Microsoft, use of microservices emerged as the technical solution because it provides a way to achieve both scale and flexibility. Code is compartmentalized, and the solution is both easier to understand and less monolithic.

    Innovations for IoT

    At the recent Microsoft Ignite 2017 technical conference, the company also announced its new Azure IoT Hub Device Provisioning Service. The goal is for customers to be able to configure “zero-touch device provisioning to their IoT hub” for large numbers of devices. Instead of requiring manual work for each device, the process is automated along with registering the device to the cloud and placing connection credentials on each of the devices.

    Microsoft recommends using Hardware Security Modules (HSMs) to securely store security keys. HSMs provide maximum security for key storage, and an updated device SDK makes it easy to establish a root of trust between the device and the cloud.

    Security Innovations

    A new paper, “ The Seven Properties of a Highly Secure Devices ,” is a resource on how to achieve the highest level of security and especially for the “tens of billions of devices powered by microcontrollers.” The paper outlines both the seven properties requires in highly secure devices, and the results of an experiment that Microsoft conducted working with a silicon partner to revise one of their microcontrollers to create a prototype, highly secure microcontroller.

    The seven properties of highly secure devices include:

    Hardware-based Root of Trust
    Small Trusted Computing Base
    Defense in Depth

    Certificate-based Authentication
    Renewable Security
    Failure Reporting

    The Seven Properties of Highly Secure Devices

  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    ON Semi Joins MCU Benchmarking Consortium

    ON Semiconductor threw its weight behind a standards group developing benchmarks for ultra-low power microcontrollers and edge-node device for the Internet of Things (IoT).

    ON Semi (Phoenix) announced Tuesday (Nov. 7) it joined the low-power subcommittee of EEMBC, the Embedded Microcontroller Benchmark Consortium. The committee is comprised of the IoTConnect work group and ULPMark work group.

    IoTConnect has already produced its initial benchmark, IoTMark-BLE, which tests the efficiency of microcontrollers and Bluetooth radios, according to EEMBC. ULPMark has produced a combination of benchmarks that target the efficiency of microcontroller cores and peripherals, results of which can be found online, the organization said.

  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    IoT cybersecurity: Why not make it a business enabler?

    I’m surprised by how uncommon it is for vendors, who really invest in security, to leverage it in terms of added value. With the disquieting experience in the car shop fresh in my memory, I’ve gathered some ideas on how one can really leverage cybersecurity investments to gain customer trust.

    Let your customers know why you should be trusted

    Of course, you have hired the best superstar security specialists or collaborating with a cybersecurity company to ensure that your products are secure today and tomorrow, so why not announce it?

    Be proactive

    Create a separate page on your website explaining in (preferably) human-comprehensible language, how you are actually making sure that the bad hackers won’t get into your customers products. Truthfully speaking, everyone knows that security can fail. By communicating your preparedness and potential measures to sustain or mitigate a cybersecurity breach, you will definitely show concern for your customer’s security and safety as well as enable trust by highlighting your preparedness.

    Publicly reward people who help you make your products safe

    There are a number of communities as well as individuals that are searching vulnerabilities in products during their free time just for fun or due to a higher calling. In addition to monetary rewards, give a shout-out to the public, thanking them for their efforts. Compete in different breach exercises and promote these events while also tending to your marketing channels.


    You know your products best, which enables you to create cybersecurity solutions not seen by the rest of the world, specific to your products. Promote your security innovations! Not only you will gain respect from your clients, those security superstars that I mentioned a few paragraphs back will be more interested in you as an employer, probably making your efforts of hiring them better, as the competition for the best cybersecurity professionals is hard nowadays.

    What’s next?

    If you are a Product Owner or a Marketing expert and like the ideas above or perhaps have some of your own, do not hesitate to establish a relationship with R&D and security organizations within your company. Although they seem to be working in their dungeons and are under heavy workload, I’m pretty sure that they are willing to contribute to your efforts to add value for your customers through cybersecurity. The value is most probably already there, it’s just the communication link to the outside world that needs to be established.

  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Bionic Eye Trial Approved

    Pixium Vision, a French company, has received the approval to begin in-human trials of a miniature wireless sub-retinal implant. Named PRIMA, the device may help those with advanced dry age-related macular degeneration get improvements in their eyesight. The company is in talks to also conduct trials in the United States.

    The PRIMA implant is a photovoltaic chip about 2mm square and only 30 microns thick. That’s tiny, but the device has 378 electrodes. The patient uses a device that looks like a conventional pair of glasses but contains an integrated camera that sends data wirelessly to a small pocket-sized image processing computer. This computer then commands the glasses to send data to the implant via invisible infrared light. The chip converts the light to electrical impulses and conducts them to the optic nerve.

    Pixium Vision receives approval for First-in-Human Clinical Trial of PRIMA, its miniaturizedsub-retinal implant

  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Colette Biometric Security Purse Screams When Stolen

    A team of college hackers was disappointed with the selection of secure purses available. Nearly every purse on the market is attractive, secure, or neither so they are designing their own security purse with some style. Instead of just brass or leather clasps keeping unwanted hands out, they are upgrading to automation and steel.

    Everything starts with a fingerprint reader connected to an Arduino. Once an acceptable finger is recognized, a motor opens a coffin lock, also known as a butt-joint fastener, which can be completely hidden inside the purse and provides a lot of holding force.

    In the case of a mugging, a sound grenade will trigger which should convince most thieves to quickly abandon it. Then, the internal GPS tells the owner where the purse can be found.

    Anti Theft Smart Purse

  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Cities are challenging software developers in Finland

    I am impressed by the fact that the major Finnish cities and growth centers in the south to the north want to take advantage of software developers know-how for future urban construction. The potential of digitalisation and IoT’s in the cities is huge. There is an increasing need for good ideas and useful software.

    Software is at the heart of digitizing cities, and Finland’s prestigious software industry is bound to provide a lot to future urban development.

    Software developers and software companies can solve the real life challenges of urban people in the Future City Challenge . The opportunity is unique, and the open data of the cities is available for coders. In the competition organized by IBM, Digita and Etteplan, ideas and solutions for the future city are planned and planned. The challenge is to find solutions that really make everyday life easier for the city.

    Solutions with new technology

    Finnish cities have never been involved in such a race before. The concept is of a special nature, and the cities are excited. Software entrepreneurs have been grateful for the project and we believe it will get a terrific popularity.

    The opportunities opened up by artificial intelligence, robotics, IoT and open data play an increasingly important role in the development of digital community services.

    New Business Opportunities?

    In fact, as digitalisation and IoT are progressing, I see the dull potential of services, traffic and public spaces, for example.

    Teams can access through open interfaces the open data of cities. Each team’s start-up package includes cutting-edge technology such as access to a country-wide IoT network based on LoRaWAN technology and the development of IBM Bluemix platform with Watson artificial intelligence. The contestants can also use the IoT skills of experienced specialists.



  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Megan Wollerton / CNET:
    Amazon Cloud Cam review: Affordable, free cloud storage, and crisp 1080p HD video, but continuous video recording is unavailable, no local microSD card support

    Amazon Cloud Cam review:
    The right balance for DIY security

  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Voice-enabled smart speakers to reach 55% of U.S. households by 2022, says report

    Adoption of voice-powered smart speakers is taking off. According to a new report from Juniper Research out this morning, smart devices like the Amazon Echo, Google Home and Sonos One will be installed in a majority – that is, 55 percent – of U.S. households by the year 2022. By that time, over 70 million households will have at least one of these smart speakers in their home, and the total number of installed devices will top 175 million.

  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Home> Systems-design Design Center > How To Article
    IoT & cloud security overview—cloud-security-overview

  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    IoT with the Ethereum Blockchain

    Anyone keeping up with financial news today is surely inundated with stories about Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. While most of the news is about the potentially inflated value of some of these coins, and how drastically they have changed in price in just a decade, there are other interesting things going on behind the scenes. For example, the currency Ethereum allows for a distributed programming platform of sorts to be implemented in the blockchain, which [GusGorman402] has taken advantage of in his latest project

    The device that he built is based on an ESP8266 which connects to a router running an instance of a Go Ethereum node. Essentially, he uses the Ethereum blockchain to control an LED connected to the ESP8266 using a feature of Ethereum called a smart contract.

    ESP8266 IoT device on Ethereum Blockchain OpenWrt MIPS Wifi Node

    Decentralized IoT. My take on embedded Ethereum, without using NodeJS. The video is long, but I show the very basics of how I put a simple IoT device onto the blockchain. I use ESP8266 ESP-01, DS18B20 temperature sensor, and WDR3600 MIPS router flashed with OpenWrt & cross-compiled Geth binary.

  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Coin Battery Shield for D1 Mini
    Small battery for your ESP8266 devices.

    There is a battery shield for D1 Mini development board, produced and sold by Wemos, but I find it a little lacking for some specific use cases. It wastes power by boosting the battery voltage to 5V and then letting the on-board LDO bring it back to 3.3V. It has a separate USB socket for charging the battery.

  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Megan Wollerton / CNET:
    Nest Secure review: the home security system is responsive and has a useful temporary disarm feature, but it’s expensive at $499, won’t work with some routers

    Nest Secure review:
    Nest Secure home security system is smart, but spendy

  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Alexa, please cause the cops to raid my home
    Sour krauts after Amazon digital assistant throws wild midnight party – for itself

    We all assume that intelligent devices will either serve our every need, or try to kill us, but what if they just want to party?

    Well, it could work out pretty expensive as Oliver Haberstroh found out when his Amazon Alexa started its own early-hours party – waking up, and blasting music automatically, while its owner was out of the apartment.

    The noise was so bad that Haberstroh’s neighbors in Pinneberg, just outside Hamburg in Germany, banged on his door and asked him to turn it down. When he failed to respond, because he wasn’t in that night, they called the police, and just over an hour later they also banged on the door but elicited no response.

    Concerned that something terrible may have happened, the cops then kicked in the door to discover nothing but Alexa rocking out on her own.

    The cops turned the music off, replaced the lock with a new one and left, leaving Haberstroh very confused when he arrived home to find that his keys no longer worked. A quick visit to the police station later and he received the keys to his new lock along with a 500-euro ($582) invoice.

    So what happened?

    Haberstroh swears he didn’t turn the device on, nor use his smartphone to instruct the gizmo to blast the music, leading to speculation about what happened and whether we can all expect to spend the rest of our lives listening to smart-home apps party in the wee hours.


    Part of the answer has come from Alexa’s log – which Amazon shared with a German newspaper, with Haberstroh’s permission. It shows that the digital assistant start blasting music from the Spotify app just three minutes after he had left his apartment.

    It meant that he was a sufficient distance away not to hear the cacophony inflicted on neighbors but was quite possibly still close enough to accidentally trigger Alexa while trying to listening to Spotify on his mobile phone.

    Here’s our speculation: he hit play on Spotify on his phone, setting Alexa off, then started walking and left his Wi-Fi or Bluetooth range, leaving Alexa to rock out by herself.

  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Compulab Launches the Fitlet2 Passive SFF PC with Apollo Lake SoCs
    by Anton Shilov on November 9, 2017 9:15 AM EST

    Compulab has announced its new fitlet2 ultra-compact PC designed for a broad range of applications, including office, IoT and industrial. The Compulab fitlet2 is a small unit, cooled passively using its own chassis made of die-cast metal. The system supports Compulab’s function and connectivity extension T-cards (FACET cards) that add functionality, such as extra GbE or USB ports, or even a 4G modem.

    The Compulab fitlet2 measures 112 mm by 84 mm, meaning that it is smaller than Intel’s NUCs and other UCFF-class PCs. Depending on exact model, the Compulab fitlet2 can be based on Intel’s Atom x7-E3950, Atom x5-E3930 or a Celeron J3455, all based on Intel’s Apollo Lake cores.

    By default, the Compulab fitlet2 system comes with two GbE ports, two USB 3.0 connectors, two USB 2.0 headers, a COM port, audio jacks, a microSD slot, an HDMI 1.4, and an mDP 1.2 output. Users can install one of Compulab’s FACET cards to get other connectivity features, including (but not limited to) a 802.11ac Wi-Fi + Bluetooth 4.2 module, a 4G modem, two extra GbE ports, four additional USB headers, or an M.2 E-key slot.

  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Collaborative robots and cybersecurity concerns for manufacturers

    Some collaborative robots have cybersecurity flaws or weaknesses, which undermines the entire point of having a robot work together with humans in the first place. Manufacturers need to take the issue seriously and system integrators should ensure safe operating conditions.

    Collaborative robots, or “cobots,” are designed to work safely alongside humans in a number of ways from the laboratory to the warehouse floor to the production line. Robot makers go to great lengths to ensure these robotic systems are safe to work alongside humans.

    Recent research has shown that some collaborative robots have cybersecurity flaws, which undermines the entire point of a collaborative robot and putting human workers at risk. Cybersecurity needs to be taken very seriously when it comes to collaborative robots. Why is it so serious? Is this different than cybersecurity in industrial robots?

    The collaborative robot cybersecurity problem

    With industrial robots, poor cybersecurity poses a major problem to the parts being produced. They could be produced just a millimeter or two off from the required specifications, causing part failure down the line. They could also be forced to stretch beyond their capabilities and break, or another of other things.

    If someone hacks into a robot, they basically have full control. This presents many dangers with industrial robots, as it does with collaborative robots. But the two dangers are slightly different, since collaborative robots are meant to work alongside people. It’s human laborers that are at most risk when a collaborative robot is compromised.

  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Industrial control systems are converging with Big Data

    Companies are using industrial control systems (ICS) and Big Data together to provide management with the insight to improve decision-making for planning, optimization, and continuous improvement of industrial plant operations.

    Within the last 10 years, industrial automation has evolved to become driven by large amounts of data due to technological innovation and advancements of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). With all the industrial data being routed through networks, the growing inter-connectivity of networks, and escalating threat scenarios, it is becoming increasingly difficult to segregate and protect industrial control system (ICS) platforms from both external and internal threats.

    Cybersecurity approaches need to be designed around a Big Data approach to provide run time intelligence on the network traffic and packet behavior in order to safeguard organizations from threats and attacks. Business intelligence (BI) solutions used to focus on internal structured data and rule-based analytics, and processed that information to support decision-making within enterprises. Big Data is designed to increase the range and variety of data that can be analyzed so additional context and insights result in better decision-making, process optimization, and security awareness.

    Big Data scales in size and speed in a predictable and straightforward way so business analytics reporting tools can grow organically. Speed is critical to this process. To decrease time to actionable results, Big Data may provide an advantage by adding a real-time view capability that can enable operational, engineering, and supervisory personnel to be more responsive in the day-to-day situations.

    Raw data is not very beneficial unless it is turned into knowledge. Data needs to be analyzed and applied to the benefit of decision-makers, the industry sector, and the architecture of the network. The response to this need is software-based analytics and decision tools suited for industrial operations management solutions. With a Big Data viewpoint, companies can visualize the quantities of data they collect to drive improvements to products and processes.

    Cyber situational awareness

    Continuous monitoring of the operational system data traffic by the collection of real-time data will allow the detection of unfamiliar activity through a machine learning modeling ability. This provides owners and cyber-security auditors unprecedented detection capabilities and visibility regardless if it’s a cyber-attack, an operational malfunction, or an incident. Capture and analysis solutions allow for every packet flowing through the network to be captured and analyzed in real time. Packet protocol layers can be broken down to ascertain the destinations and details of every packet.

    By analyzing every packet, normal traffic patterns can be developed, giving detection of deviations a greater probability of occurrence. There are security challenges that exist with Big Data environments that should be mitigated against, by using security solutions that can keep up with the continuous evolution of non-relational databases, security measures for automated data transfers, ensuring a high occurrence of data validation for trust, origin and accuracy, measures against unethical behaviors related to data mining, access control encryption, and having a detailed audit process that can manage the enormous amount of data.

    Big Data can be leveraged to:

    Make information more transparent
    Gain additional detailed performance information that spurs innovations and increases quality
    Utilize refined analytics that minimize risks and discover insights that would not have been visible
    Implement theories and analyze those results in controlled experimental environments that guide investment decisions
    Augment staff with real-time operations centers that include automation and analytics—risk management is increased and downtime is minimized, resulting in 15% staffing reductions and 5% production increases.
    Revolutionize the supply chain management, demand forecasting, integrated business planning, and supplier collaboration and risk analytics.

    Lack of knowledge, confidence

    Not everyone has bought into the idea of data analytics and the benefits. In a recent survey, more than a quarter of companies polled stated they don’t have any current plans to invest in Big Data and/or IoT within the next few years.

    Some respondents noted they do not have sufficient knowledge to justify the costs related to this technology. Others cited a lack of resources and time. Over half of the survey respondents reported they already have cost-effective, reliable systems in place to ensure safety and success and their companies are growing without Big Data.

    While advocates tout Big Data being as a vast wealth of knowledge that can improve operations, skeptics see Big Data expanding the cybersecurity attack surface without sufficient defense layers.

  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Logitech: We’re gonna brick your Harmony Link gizmos next year
    Built-in obsolescence, meet kill switch

    One more reason to avoid cloud-reliant Internet of Things – as if you didn’t have enough already.

    Owners of Logitech’s universal remote controller have been told the product will stop working after March next year. Harmony Link is one of a range of home hub products offered by Logitech. Link owners have been offered a discount on upgrades but, unsurprisingly, are not happy.

    Here’s a community discussion and further chat on Reddit. We note that it’s allegedly due to an SSL/TLS security certificate expiring in March 2018 that for some reason Logitech can’t or won’t renew, and when this runs out, presumably this will break connections between the hub and Logitech’s backend cloud. Certificates cost not very much these days to purchase or renew.

    The manufacturer also appears to be censoring the words “class action lawsuit” from its forums for reasons you can probably guess.

    The move may bring Logitech into conflict with statutory warranties, which in many countries determine that a product should be functional for a specified time. Owners are questioning whether Logitech has violated its own one-year limited hardware warranty.

  30. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Online outrage makes Logitech drop a brick: Now it will replace slain Harmony Link gizmos
    And tries to explain ‘class action lawsuit’ forum censorship

    Logitech is now offering to replace free of charge the connected home hubs it will automatically brick early next year.

    In a hasty U-turn, the electronics slinger said it will exchange Harmony Link control hubs with a similar product, the Harmony Hub. Both units allow punters to set up remote controls for various connected appliances via a combination of Wi-Fi and IR hardware. The Link was sold between 2011 and 2015, and has since been replaced in Logitech’s lineup by the Harmony Hub.

  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Update: We Will Replace Your Logitech Harmony Links

    We heard you and we want to make it right.

    If you are a Harmony Link user, we will reach out to you between now and March 2018 to make arrangements to replace your Link with a free Harmony Hub, a product with similar app-based remote control features to Link, with the added benefit of controlling many popular connected home devices plus, it works with popular voice assistants. You can also contact us at to make arrangements for your replacement.

  32. Tomi Engdahl says:

    41% Plan to Buy Smart Home Devices

    According to Parks Associates, 41% of U.S. broadband households plan to purchase a smart home product in the next 12 months, including 27% with high purchase intentions. The most popular devices include smart smoke/CO detectors, thermostats and lightbulbs. The research firm predicts U.S. broadband households will buy almost 55 million smart home devices in 2020.

    Other findings indicate:

    60% of U.S. broadband households with insurance are interested in a smart home product that can detect, notify, or prevent damage or loss from water or fire or theft.
    Approximately 75% of U.S. broadband households with insurance who are interested in smart products are willing to let the devices automatically communicate with insurance companies.
    More than one-third of consumers in the market for a smart home device would find a recommendation from an insurance company “very important.”
    The security industry is the largest channel for smart home systems and a strong channel for numerous smart product categories, including door locks and networked video cameras.

  33. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Android Things Wire Game

    In this steady hand wire game, players hold a loop of wire and move it around a piece of shaped wire. (

    I connected it to Android Things through a Pico PI-IMX6UL, though you can use other boards.

  34. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Automating Conference Room Signage with Raspberry Pi

    While employees there are generally quite good at scheduling meetings using Google calendar, the problem comes when someone forgets where their meeting is. This results in annoying interruptions, and awkward occasions

    In order to remedy this issue, Poole set up a Raspberry Pi to authenticate itself with SparkFun’s Google calendar, using Electron under the BenjaOS to display the correct information outside of each meeting room.
    While there are calendar-based digital signage devices that you can simply purchase, Poole’s DIY solution avoids the hassle of setting up a server to control everything, getting info off of the appropriate calendar as needed.

  35. Tomi Engdahl says:

    NI’s Kyle Voosen provides an inside look at IoT Solutions World Congress

    Meanwhile, Back In Barcelona…
    Behind the bustle at IoT Solutions World Congress

    We recently wrapped up another successful IoT Solutions World Congress (IoTSWC), hosted by the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) in Barcelona.

    Fast-forward two years and urgency is in the air. Engineers from a broad set of industries are ready to get to work implementing the Industrial IoT. I personally had the chance to speak to delegates about instrumenting wastewater treatment plants; controlling the smart grid and pharmaceutical machines; testing connected cars; and even launching (and landing) rockets! A colleague, whom I won’t name, said she had achieved “nerd-vana.”

    Winning With Time Sensitive Networking (TSN)
    At the annual IoTSWC award ceremony, the TSN Testbed for Flexible Manufacturing won the award for Best Testbed. The testbed has dozens of member companies, and is hosted by NI in the USA and Bosch in Germany. The selection committee had to consider 27 other testbeds managed by the IIC, so I’m sure pinpointing a winner was difficult. Congratulations to all the engineers who have spent so much of their time proving out TSN and ensuring interoperability between each other’s products!

    CompactRIO Gets Edgy
    Everyone’s favorite edge node, CompactRIO, was featured outside the NI booth by several other exhibiting companies, including Cisco, Deloitte, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Intel, and PTC. For delegates looking for a turnkey solution, we pointed them to our work with Deloitte, HPE, and PTC.

    Staying on Trend
    Our booth might have been full of real-world IIoT systems, but we aren’t taking our eyes off the future. During the IoTSWC, we released NI Trend Watch 2018 into the wild. Of the five trends profoundly affecting our customers (and the world), two of them relate specifically to the IIoT: “Three Mandates for Successfully Managing Your Things” and “Automating Engineering Insights With Machine Learning.” Be sure to give it a read before your next cocktail party.

  36. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Cyber Security in the Era of the Smart Home

    The global smart home market is projected to reach at least $40 billion in value by 2020. Perhaps not surprisingly, OEMs are inadvertently creating major security risks in their rush to market by shipping smart home products with inadequate security and unpatched vulnerabilities. As ABI Research Analyst Dimitrios Pavlakis notes, ignoring cybersecurity at the design level provides a wide-open door for malicious actors to exploit smart home products.

  37. Tomi Engdahl says:

    4zerobox Bridges the Gap Between Industrial PLCs and IoT

    what 4zerobox is setting out to do, by integrating the programmable logic controllers (PLCs) that are already common in industrial applications with modern IoT technology. PLCs have been around for a long time, and they’re kind of like the Arduinos of the industrial world.

    4zerobox is based on the ESP32 SoC and features a pair of mikroBUS sockets for mikroElektronika clicks, including LoRA and secure IoT boards.

    The 4zerobox can take data from an existing PLC (or feed data to it) through a handful of common communication methods. Or, it can replace a traditional PLC completely. That data can then be sent to an IoT dashboard, which works similarly to home IoT systems. It can display the data, or allow users to control equipment. For ease of use, it’s programmed using Python

    It’s currently in the crowdfunding stage on Kickstarter
    Early birds can get the 4zerobox for €149

  38. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Push notifications from Raspberry Pi

    With the terms push notification we identify a specific mechanism that considers the possibility to send messages with the connected devices. Their diffusion is due to the adoption by smartphone operating systems: the first one to introduce them was Apple with iOS version 3.0. They can be distinguished from the above said methods for various reasons, but the most important one is probably the functional model. To send a SMS we just need the recipient’s phone number, and the same goes for the e-mail whose address we need to know. In the case of push notifications the mechanism is what is technically called “publish/subscribe”: it is the user to “subscribe” a certain topic (or channel) for which he would like to receive the notifications, and he is capable of canceling the subscription at any moment.

    Push notifications operate in a quite complex way

    Pushetta can be considered as a sort of gateway that intermediates the communications between him who sends the notifications and him who receives them.

    Pushetta solves this problem: it offers the applications that are enabled to receive notifications and a a simple mechanism to send them. Both the Apps and the service are completely free: the first step, in practice, is to go to download page, to register and download the App for smartphone.

    By registering to Pushetta you obtain an authentication token, called API Key, that is needed to authorize the API calls that we will use hereafter. The API Key can be displayed by accessing your own Dashboard on the Website

  39. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Revisiting the Bolt, an ESP8266-Based IoT Platform

    Unfortunately while cheap, flexible, and amazingly easy to use, the ESP8266-based module is probably a poor choice if you’re thinking about building an connected project that might eventually become a product. Unlike the ESP32, the chip lacks basic security features like secure boot and flash encryption.

    However the company would argue that the hardware isn’t really what’s interesting about the Bolt. With perhaps the most intriguing feature being that the Blot Cloud platform has integrating machine learning algorithms to predict sensor values, and detect anomalies in your data, entirely off the shelf.

    But the heavy reliance on the cloud is both the Bolt stand out feature, and the most worrying aspect. The business models behind the Internet of Things have worried me for some time, and the Bolt’s low price, alongside the overall low crowdfunding goal for the campaign, makes me wonder if there is enough money in the pot to continue to run and maintain the Bolt Cloud.

    With bundled “lifetime access” to the Bolt Cloud, like many other companies engaged in the connected device space, Bolt are gambling that the ongoing maintenance costs for the cloud services will be low and that a sufficient number of new customers will buy their hardware to cover ongoing costs with new business. Unfortunately that assumption has proved overly optimistic for several other companies before them.

  40. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Getting Started with Ubuntu* Core on an Intel® IoT Gateway

    This article demonstrates to new users how to install Ubuntu* Core on an Intel® IoT Gateway GB-BXTB-3825. The GB-BXTB-3825 is powered by an Intel® Atom™ E3825 dual-core processor which would be ideal for industrial applications such as data generation, data aggregation, and data analysis. Ubuntu* Core is a lightweight, transactional version of Ubuntu* designed for deployments on IoT devices. Snaps are universal Linux packages that are available to install on Ubuntu* Core to work on IoT devices and more.

  41. Tomi Engdahl says:

    New NanoPi Fire3 and Fire2A SBCs with Ubuntu Core-based FriendlyCore OS

    FriendlyElec’s open source two new SBCs, which support Android and Linux distributions including a new Ubuntu Core-based FriendlyCore distro, are identical except for the processor and RAM. The NanoPi Fire2A (image below) uses the same Samsung S5P4418 (4x Cortex-A9 @ 400MHz to 1.4GHz) as the NanoPi 2 Fire, accompanied with 512MB DDR3 while the NanoPi Fire3 (image on top) taps the S5P6818 (8x Cortex-A53 @ 400MHz to 1.4GHz) used on the NanoPC-T3 and NanoPi M3, with 1GB RAM.

  42. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Develop on Intel® FPGAs

    Accelerate the smart and connected world with scalable and flexible solutions.

    Introducing the Intel® Cyclone® 10 LP FPGA Evaluation Kit

    This low-cost kit is an excellent hardware platform for FPGA developers, IoT system designers, makers, and students to begin designing with programmable logic. Intel® Cyclone® 10 LP FPGAs are optimized for power and cost-sensitive applications and designed for commercial, industrial, and automotive use.

  43. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Getting Started with Ubuntu* Core on an Intel® IoT Gateway

    This article demonstrates to new users how to install Ubuntu* Core on an Intel® IoT Gateway GB-BXTB-3825. The GB-BXTB-3825 is powered by an Intel® Atom™ E3825 dual-core processor which would be ideal for industrial applications such as data generation, data aggregation, and data analysis. Ubuntu* Core is a lightweight, transactional version of Ubuntu* designed for deployments on IoT devices.


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